White House to Call on Schools to Go Green
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White House to Call on Schools to Go Green

A top White House climate adviser will tell school leaders on Wednesday that President Joe Biden wants more schools to go green, according to prepared remarks shared with POLITICO’s E&E News.

Ali Zaidi’s speech to the legislative conference of the Association of School Superintendents and Association of School Officials came as the country bakes under the weight of stifling heat waves and on the heels of a demand from the Chicago Teachers Union — one of the nation’s most powerful unions — to include climate action in collective bargaining.

“Focusing on our nation’s schools — literally the buildings, buses, and operations — is essential to addressing the climate crisis,” Zaidi says in prepared remarks. “Schools can lead the way in reducing climate pollution and creating safer, healthier learning environments for our children.”

Specifically, Zaidi will ask schools to commit to reducing greenhouse gas emissions by at least 50 percent over the next 10 years through the Department of Energy’s Better Climate Challenge. He will also ask school officials to work with labor organizations to create pre-college and apprenticeship programs to help train construction workers in clean energy.